Blog: : RUC and I


In between all the grand thoughts and visions for the future, there is also such a thing as work-life balance. RUSK’s new blogger spotlights the issue.

Berit Grønbeck i sit RUC-hjem, kontoret på Humbach. Og ja, hun er gravid. De studerende og ansatte må altså snart undvære hende i et stykke tid. Privatfoto.

Berit Grønbeck at her RUC base, her Humbach office. And yes, she’s expecting: before long, her students and colleagues will have to do without her for a while. Private photo.

Since my RUSK blog has been roaringly silent for about a year now, I reckon it’s about time I served up a few of my thoughts.

I have to admit, starting up a blog has been difficult. I work as an educational officer with the Bachelor Programme in Humanities, and although I do have a lot of thoughts and ideas, launching my thoughts into a public forum where I know the debate can get intense, as is only right and proper for RUC, can be quite the challenge.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe the debates and discussions are very important for RUC, and I’m happy to participate, but generally my main concern has been what my angle on blogging should be. The conclusion I’ve come to is that I would like to look a bit more at what life at RUC is like for the many people, including myself, who come to Marbjerg Mark to work every day.

The RUC way

It would probably be the most appropriate to start out by introducing myself and explaining why I’m here.

I started out at RUC back in 2004 enrolled in what was then called HumBas (today, it’s the Bachelor Programme in Humanities). Perhaps the reason I’m feeling inspired to write this particular blog right now is that we’ve recently welcomed a big bunch of excited and hopeful new students. As they stood there in early September with a nervous look and an uneasy feeling, I immediately saw in them the person I was ten years ago, in 2004.

Read more: “RUC should be RUC”

Born and raised in Tingbjerg, a Copenhagen ghetto suburb, I don’t come from a family of academics. My parents had no formal education, and after I left school I worked for a few years and spent a little time in the world of music. Then I began to take individual HF courses and suddenly one day, I had picked up enough points to apply for university, which was definitely unknown territory for both myself and anyone in my family. I remember my mom’s words very clearly the day I told her I was applying for university: “All right, but why? What’s wrong with being a social worker?” Today, being a mom myself, I can understand her reaction, because her daughter was about to enter territory that she herself knew absolutely nothing about and had no way of helping me with.

Comfortable routine

But there I was on my first day at RUC back in 2004 and, well, I’m still here today.

If I have to put my finger on what I like about RUC, it’s the experience I’ve gained and the network I’ve built here.

Obviously, there is a reason for that: I must like it here, right? Or maybe that old nagging feeling is still there. Do I dare leave RUC, I ask myself, now that I have my degree? After all, I was given the opportunity to stay here in the comfort of the place I know so well. On the other hand, it might also be because I believe that, given my experience from RUC, I still have something to contribute. There are a lot of opportunities out there, but I’m still here. It made me stop and think about what I value in my everyday work at RUC. By this, I don’t mean in any bigger context, not in the same way we discuss, get involved or make assessments. No, what I’m talking about is day-to-day life.

Den faste morgenrutine inkluderer aflevering af børn. Dernæst venter RUC. Privatfoto.

My fixed morning routine involves dropping off the kids on the way to RUC. Private photo.

I like the way I start every day at RUC. I usually get here at about the same time; I can park my car the same place; the cars already there are usually the same, and they also come at the same time and park in the same place. We don’t do it because we’re boring: we do it because we have a set routine. For example, I have to drop off my three kids first, and it’s just so much easier if we do things the same way each morning without too much experimenting.

After I park my car, I walk through the first place I worked at here, ENSPAC (the Department of Environmental, Social and Spatial Change) on my way to House 9.1 and my Humbach office. Even after so many years at RUC, I still enjoy meeting so many smiling, happy people ready to seize the day, even if there is the occasional headwind.

Experience and network

På RUC ender bloggeren typisk med at parkere det samme sted. Rutinen giver tryghed. Privatfoto.

On arriving at RUC, our blogger usually always parks in the same spot. Having a routine provides peace of mind. Private photo.

So, if I have to put my finger on what I like about RUC, it’s the experience I’ve gained and the network I’ve built here. I like the fact the when I call someone somewhere at RUC to ask a question, very often I’ll know that person, and that’s something I can tell is important in my working life.

I’m also looking forward to going on maternity leave, because having to navigate the snowy and slippery roads out here is not exactly something I enjoy. This winter, I’ll stay at home while my new baby is peacefully asleep. (Already a mom to three kids, I know how unrealistic that sounds, but it’s a nice thought.)

Maybe at some point I’ll grow relaxed enough to blog some more just to remind myself that I’m still part of RUC, but perhaps also to remind everyone that there is still a world outside the university that is also about life, even with all the new reforms being implemented, work assignments that have to be shared, and project reports that need to be written. After all, we are only human, and we have to remember that how we feel is actually important.

So, think about it. Who are you and why are you here?

Berit Grønbech Rosengaard is an educational officer with HumBach. In her life, she juggles her work, her role as union representative at three RUC departments and her soon-to-be role as a mother of four children between naught and nine years old. With small stories about her life and life in general, Berit wants to use her blog to focus on the everyday well-being of both students and employees at RUC.

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